25 May 2021 5:00pm - 7:00pm ONLINE SESSION (UK Time)


This is an online event hosted via Zoom. Online registration is now closed.


Hande Güzel (University of Cambridge)
'The Affective and Gendered Experience of Time and Space in Medical Settings'

Julieta Chaparro Buitrago (University of Cambridge)
'Reproductive Violence and the Injured Body: Reflections on Activism, Forced Sterilization, and Vulnerability'

Video: J Chapparro


Hande Güzel
'The Affective and Gendered Experience of Time and Space in Medical Settings'

Re-virginisation refers to the (re)gaining of women’s ‘technical’ virginity even though the woman might have had penile-vaginal intercourse before. While virginity takes on many different meanings that are culturally determined and socially constructed, ‘technical’ virginity refers to ‘proving’ virginity through blood and a sense of tightness of the vagina. Although studies have shown that neither of these two can be markers of virginity, social change around this myth has not followed the research in the field. Hence, to be ‘marriageable’ again, women might either be operated on to have a so-called new hymen via hymenoplasty (sometimes accompanied by vaginal tightening surgery) or buy a product called artificial hymen (accompanied by vaginal tightening cream).

In this paper, I provide an affective reading of times and spaces that re-virginisers engage with. In other words, I provide an exploration through which the constant interaction between emotions and times and spaces will be legible. The affective reading of time will allow us to gauge the conceptualisation of time by re-virginisers against the “time norm”, and how time is suspended, shared, and reimagined in the process. The affective reading of spaces, borrowing from the literature on emotional geographies will illustrate not only the spaces re-virginisers roam as they experience re-virginisation, but also how bodies as spaces are affectively shaped.


About the Speakers

Dr Hande Güzel is a Teaching Associate in Sociology at the University of Cambridge. She holds a PhD from the same Department, titled 'Becoming-Virgin: Re-Virginisation Practices in Turkey'. Prior to coming to Cambridge, she studied Political Science and International Relations at Bogazici University (BA), and Comparative Studies in History and Society at Koc University (MA by research). Hande is also a fellow at the Cambridge Centre for International Research, and Research Assistant to the End Everyday Racism project.

Dr Julieta Chaparro Buitrago's work builds on interdisciplinary fields such as fertility studies, decolonial feminisms, reproductive justice, and Latin American studies. Her research probes long-standing colonial structures, whether through fertility control or exposure to contaminants, that shape indigenous and peasant women's reproductive lives. Dr Chaparro Buitrago received her Ph.D. in Anthropology from the University of Massachusetts Amherst, and a graduate certificate in Women, Gender, and Sexuality Studies. Her dissertation was titled The Promise of Empowerment: Reproductive Justice and the Cases of Forced Sterilizations in Peru. The research looks at the aftermath of the sterilization abuses that took place between 1995 and 2001 during the implementation of the Reproductive Health and Family Planning (RHFPP) Program, and analyzes the dissonances emerging from the efforts of visibility and justice by the victims, feminist activists, and the Peruvian state.



An event organised by Health, Medicine and Agency Research Network
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